commanteer's past comments

  • 2

    commanteer

    @SCAP65

    Randolph Hearst stirred up fears of "reefer madness" to get it made illegal so that his forest holdings would not collapse in value

    I'm afraid there's no truth to that story at all. Easy enough to check out. For the record, governments rarely got involved in telling people what they could ingest until the 21st century. Now they routinely prohibit everything from heroin to unpasteurized milk. And people, for the most part, passively accept it.

    I don't like marijuana, and I think it's a bad habit. But I also think that people should be allowed to screw up their own lives any way they choose, without having the additional risk of being labelled a criminal. Unless they are clearly putting others in danger, there is no need for a law.

    Posted in: The New York Times compares the ban on marijuana to the ban on alcohol during the Prohibition era. Do you think the comparison is apt?

  • -2

    commanteer

    When one gambles away all of one's money, and then borrows more money from gangsters, and loses it as well, then one must expect the consequences to be harsh.

    Yes. And by the laws of gangsters, you are absolutely correct. The question is, is gangster law something you want to live by?

    China can have the most draconian punishments possible, and it will do nothing to deter this sort of crime. These drug mules have no choice in the matter. If there were no gangsters, their gambling addiction would leave them destitute and probably homeless, without friends or family. Thanks to the yakuza who are willing to capitalize on their weaknesses, they end up in a Chinese prison with a Chinese bullet in their head. Who knows? Maybe that's the easy way out. But they have little choice once the yakuza have their claws in them,

    Sure they had a choice in the beginning. But the yakuza make sure they have no choices in the end.

    Posted in: China executes Japanese man for drug offenses

  • -1

    commanteer

    Never heard Japanese giant hornets called "sparrow wasps" before. Makes them sound kinda cute.

    Posted in: Man dies after being stung by wasps

  • 13

    commanteer

    Most of these older guys are recruited by gangs in Japan via gambling and loan sharks. They go to yakuza-run casinos, cock fights or whatever. They lose all their money and the yaks "kindly" front them some credit so they can keep gambling. Then, once they are deep in...voila. A willing drug mule who will risk their life just to get out of a gambling debt that cost their masters nothing.

    It's a nasty business, and these guys being executed are mostly victims.

    Posted in: China executes Japanese man for drug offenses

  • 1

    commanteer

    If Martin Scorsese is so worried about the time he has left, I am surprised that he wasted so much of it to make The Wolf of Wall Street. A complete waste of his talents.

    Posted in: Working late in life, directors refuse to say cut

  • 0

    commanteer

    @jerseyboy

    make sure that these folks are not thought of simply as 298 nameless/faceless victims

    I understand that idea, but can't really accept it. Many 1000s of good people die prematurely every day around the world. We will never be aware that most of them ever existed, though they may have been very precious to those who knew them.

    I mourn when people I die, often even when they are not immediate friends. It would be impossible, a kind of grief overload, to feel something about the countless strangers who die every day.

    When I read this article. I felt horrible. It makes us feel as though we know the persons involved - though we don't. It's a manipulative psychological trick that takes advantage of human nature. We care, we feel bad, we think of how awful it is. But we will forget these stories tomorrow in most cases. And what of the majority who go unmentioned?

    You could say it's harmless, but it's not. The parasites who cover these stories are often highly intrusive. They stick their cameras into peoples' faces at a moment of intense grief. All to get viewers or readers. You can say that the families provided the info willingly to the media, but in what emotional state? People may want to let out the grief, so they talk to a reported who pretends he is there to help. The reporter first manipulates the families in grief, and then manipulates his readers into feeling a superficial sense of compassion. The usual next step is to ask for donations, which would at least give the whole exercise some purpose.

    Posted in: A kiss, a prayer: The last hours of MH17's victims

  • 4

    commanteer

    This sort of article is of questionable ethics. Most readers know none of these people, and had no connection to their lives. Why is it necessary to make a tragedy personal for the masses? While we feel sympathy and our heart aches when we read this, we are also being entertained - as on is when reading a tragic piece of fiction. But this isn't fiction - they are real people.

    If it were me on that plane, or someone close to me, I wouldn't care to see their lives "dramatized" to provide entertainment to complete strangers around the world.

    Or is there some purpose to this that I am missing?

    Posted in: A kiss, a prayer: The last hours of MH17's victims

  • 4

    commanteer

    What is it with these countless 50-something year old men with massive chips on their shoulders in Japan? I run into them almost everyday. I'm assuming it's the economy, combined with bad personal habits (such as drinking). Still, it's like they never grew up. 17 year old juvenile delinquents in a 57 year old body.

    Posted in: Man rams car into police station in Kitakyushu

  • -1

    commanteer

    therefore they need to be held to a high standard

    The problem with this thinking is that it's a disingenuous way of saying that Israel's neighbors need to be held to a lower standard, as though they are incapable of living up to the standards we set for others. It's a subliminal expression of racism, buried in a message of "support."

    Posted in: Silent protest held in Tokyo against Gaza bloodshed

  • 5

    commanteer

    A hunter who shoots through a thicket at a target he cannot clearly see deserves all the punishment he gets. How can such a person be allowed to handle a gun, as strict as the gun laws are here?

    Posted in: Deer hunter shot and killed by fellow hunter

  • -6

    commanteer

    One has to wonder, with all the terror and bloodshed in that region, that people get most upset about Israel. Palestinians and children are being slaughtered by the 1000s next door in Syria, and I don't see any support for them.

    What is it that makes Israel special? Why are Hamas, brutal and corrupt as they are, getting so much love? While Israel, which has done so much for the world in creativity and advancements, is treated as the source of evil? Not that they are blameless, but they are leagues ahead of their neighbours and enemies in the region.

    There is clearly something else going on in the minds of many protestors, and it isn't pretty.

    Posted in: Silent protest held in Tokyo against Gaza bloodshed

  • 1

    commanteer

    Prices are absurd. Why should I pay 800 yen for a processed, flavorless and not especially healthy lunch at McDonald's when I can have my choice of great lunches made from fresh ingredients for that same price all around town?

    If McDonald's is no longer inexpensive, then I don't see the point of its existence anymore. How can a giant company with massive buying power and mass production not beat the pricing of individually owned restaurants that buy and sell fresh and carefully prepared ingredients?

    Nobody wants "gourmet" burgers from McDonald's when they are surrounded by real gourmet. (And how is it that none of these wonderful burgers have fresh lettuce and tomato?) Give us the basics, with cheap prices. It can't be that difficult.

    Article Unavailable

  • -6

    commanteer

    It could even be Putin doing it to make the Ukraine look bad. He was most likely behind blowing up apartment buildings full of Russians in Moscow to gain support for his war on Chechnya. This wouldn't be all that different. But we will likely never know.

    Posted in: Int'l probe demanded after Malaysian airliner shot down over Ukraine

  • 10

    commanteer

    Jack66, I've got young daughters too, but I'm more worried about them growing up in a police state that might send them off to jail for expressing themselves as artists. If anything is twisted in this story, it's the police arresting this woman.

    Posted in: Arrest of Tokyo vagina artist sparks free expression protest

  • 1

    commanteer

    I don't agree with the thinking that all pervs eventually escalate to rape, but in this case he's already 95% of the way there. He physically assaulted a woman and ripped off her undergarments. Moving on to rape will not be much of a leap for this guy. Hope they catch him soon.

    Posted in: Woman robbed of underwear while walking home

  • 7

    commanteer

    So, this scumbag took a 13-14 year old girl to a live hotel and then denies any indecent acts? Really? And, how stupid is this little trout for going along with him in the first place? The pair of them need a good slap up the side of the head!

    Not fair. You can't expect a 13 year old to always make good decisions. This doesn't mean she is stupid or a bad person. She's a kid making a bad decision with the "assistance" of a fully grown adult. Again, a kid.

    The problem is that most people forget how stupid they were as kids. That's one reason to keep a diary - so you can discover how stupid you really were once. Otherwise we forget.

    Posted in: Mie police officer arrested for indecent acts with school girl

  • 0

    commanteer

    Open the doors and windows and take off your clothes. Unless of course you're paranoid about nudity. But I can tell you without a doubt that it's great to garden that way!

    You have obviously never gardened in Japan. Every bit of skin you leave exposed will be attacked by mosquitoes, countless unidentified bugs and whatever the heck else causes rashes or skin irritation. Try it naked... no way. There would be nothing left of you.

    On the other hand, gardening while well protected and well covered means quite a sweat. Coming inside will feel much cooler afterwards.

    Posted in: What is the most environmentally friendly way to keep cool in summer?

  • 1

    commanteer

    Cutting seats is a compulsive action, especially for a grown man. I'd be surprised if he hadn't done it habitually. I think it is routine for police to tell someone "Tell us all the other crimes you've committed and we'll go easier on you. If you hold back and we connect you with others crimes, you'll get the full charges on those as well."

    I am certain there are cases where people are pushed to confess to crimes they haven't committed (so the cops can "solve" more cases), but this is not likely to be one of them.

    Posted in: Man arrested for cutting seats on Keisei line trains

  • 2

    commanteer

    Most Japanese managers in China are good. You do get the occasional know-it-all loudmouth who has been getting with shooting his mouth off in Japan (where people like that are politely tolerated) for years - and thinks he can continue that way in China. I knew of one. He came back to Japan in a box.

    His Japanese co-workers were not too surprised - they knew his personality. Can't know the facts of this case, since only a few people were in on the original conversation. The manager may have been a jerk. Or, maybe, the Chinese manager who told everybody what he said just made it up to get even with him over some unrelated dispute. Either way, the company will have to pull him out of China.

    Posted in: Chinese workers strike over Japanese boss' war denial

  • 3

    commanteer

    There are a lot of sleazy Japanese in other countries that take advantage of Japanese tourists. Unfortunate, but Japanese are too trusting of other Japanese. Especially when they meet overseas, their guard goes way down in that respect. So far as accommodations, I have seen some pretty dodgy "youth hostels" around the world. Australia is expensive these days, and this may have been one of the best deals in town. Not saying that to support the owner, but for the kids it's just basic economics.

    Posted in: Japanese, Korean backpackers found living in squalor after Sydney fire

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